Ghosts, Monsters, and the Importance of Preparedness.

Hey bloggers!  This month we thought we would do something a little fun and different for our followers.  As you know, the month of October is recognized as the spookiest month of the year.  A time to turn your home into your own version of a haunted house, eat as much candy wish and enjoy every classic scary movie ever made.  Thinking of these traditions and combining them with our mission of preparedness our Communications Team had a “What If” moment. So, with no further ado, please enjoy the following post by Red Cross Volunteer, Avainte Saunders.
 
By Avainte Saunders
 
Every October, the movie industry pushes out numerous thrillers and horror flicks in an attempt to scare moviegoers. After all, it is the month of Halloween, the time of year when all kinds of things of the paranormal variety can occur. I love this time of year because I love scary movies. Well, let me rephrase that. I love the idea of scary movies. Let me explain.
In general, I tend to be a very curious person. I am the person that will strain my neck to look at the car a cop has pulled over on the side of the road. I am the person that will obsessively read a book to the very end because I NEED to know what happens in the end, even if I have to stay up literally all night to do it (this was particularly grueling task when I read Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows  from 11pm until 10 AM the next morning). I’m the person who will look at Dexter spoilers before the shows have even aired because I NEED to know what happens next. I’m that person.
So it should come as no surprise that the trailers for scary movies have a mesmerizing affect on me. No matter how silly a horror film looks based on the trailer, I will always want to know the ending of it. This would be great for someone who can watch a movie like Paranormal Activity, enjoy the frightening parts in the theatre, go home, and sleep soundly in their bed, without a care in the world. That is awesome.
I am not that way. When it comes to scary movies, I am a big, blubbering baby. When I see a scary movie, no matter how ridiculous and impossible, it sticks in my mind for days, sometimes weeks. I once convinced myself after watching The Ring that since I had technically watched the video while watching the movie, I only had seven days to live. So for the next seven days, I would monitor all TVs around me. This was particularly difficult because at the time I was working at a place where there was always a TV somewhere around me. It didn’t matter that I didn’t get a phone call with someone saying, “seven days” in a creepy voice.  I was convinced that I would see a creepy ghost girl crawling out of my TV in seven days. I guess I don’t have to tell you that of course I was not dead in seven days; I was completely fine and healthy. But this happens every single time I watch a horror flick. I inevitably convince myself that I will meet the same horrible death as the characters in the movie.
Sometimes, when I’m really bored, I try to think if anything I have learned in life (for example things I have learned while volunteering at the Red Cross) would keep me safe if I were in a scary movie. For example, I think I could definitely survive a movie like Cloverfield. If a giant, violent monster were to attack my city, I know the first thing I would need is to prepare a kit with food, water, flashlights, batteries, radio, etc. I also know that I should make a plan in the event that Jason or Michael Myers terrorize my neighborhood. Being informed about how to detect a zombie and what I should do in the event of a zombie apocalypse will also keep me safe in the event that I wake up in 28 Days Later.
Because of my knowledge of sheltering-in-place, I know how to protect myself in the event of a War of the Worlds. I know that general home alone safety dictates that I ensure my windows and doors are securely locked (although in the case of movies like Psycho and The Strangers I’m not sure that would actually protect me).
The point I am trying to make is that many horror characters would have been safe and alive had they had some basic preparedness knowledge and taken basic steps to prepare themselves. So when I am lying awake in my bed after seeing Paranormal Activity 3, I can ease my troubled mind with the knowledge that being Red Cross Ready will keep me safe.  🙂
DISCLAIMER: The Red Cross does not guarantee the effectiveness of preparedness in the event of alien invasions, evil ghost encounters, psychotic killers, vampire attacks, zombie apocalypse, etc.
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